Fears abate as levels drop on the Shannon
The threat of flooding in the aftermath of Storm Desmond has alleviated after water levels on the River Shannon dropped again yesterday.
While Met Éireann says heavy rain is forecast for a number of days to come, there are no plans to issue a weather warning. But authorities warned that parts of the country remain in a "severe flood situation" as the clean-up operation continues.
The Office of Public Works said water levels at Athlone rose by 1cm yesterday and were set to peak. Levels on the River Lee in Cork are also being monitored closely. But in all other parts of the Shannon, including around flood-hit Limerick, water levels have fallen by up to 7.5cm over the past 24 hours.
Clare County Council said water levels on the Lower River Shannon at Springfield, Clonlara, had recorded a 15cm drop, while Limerick City and County Council said water levels there recorded a nominal decrease of less than 2.5cm.
The ESB decreased discharge levels from the Parteen Weir yesterday. It is expected to remain at this level of discharge for the next few days. However, the situation will be reviewed again today.
Meanwhile, the Red Cross has received applications from 37 businesses seeking emergency assistance from the Government's €5m fund, and received 140 calls yesterday. Many of the applicants have also indicated their intentions to apply for assistance from a second phase of funding in the New Year. This will involve firms applying for up to a further €15,000.
Independent TD Denis Naughten called on the Government to provide financial assistance to farmers who had lost fodder as a result of the recent flooding.
He said the Taoiseach had acknowledged farming was a business, yet farmers were excluded from the current financial aid.